A snobbish investor and a wily street con-artist find their positions reversed as part of a bet by two callous millionaires.
Director John Landis’ popular lampooning screwball comedy concerned the long-standing debate of hereditary-nature vs. environment-nurture.
The social satire with mature content told about a reversal of roles, and “trading places” between two unequals, as part of a $1 bet and “scientific experiment” – [Note: the two were both cast members of Saturday Night Live, although at differing times]:
Billy Ray Valentine (Eddie Murphy), a homeless yet wily con artist
Louis Winthorpe III (Dan Aykroyd), a snobbish Wall Street commodity broker
The film was best remembered for the topless nudity displayed by young Jamie Lee Curtis as a sympathetic hooker with a heart of gold named Ophelia, who vowed she was drug-free and didn’t have a pimp. The lady-of-the-night befriended the un-street-smart downcast loser and unsuspecting victim Louis, and allowed him to stay at her “dump” of a place. After removing her top in a mirror, she turned, covered her breasts, and advised him: “By the way, food and rent are not the only things around here that cost money. You sleep on the couch,” although at one point, she stripped down to a thong and got in bed with him.
Tags: Dan Aykroyd, Denholm Elliott, Don Ameche, Eddie Murphy, Frank Oz, Free movies 1983, James Belushi, Jamie Lee Curtis, Kristin Holby, Paul Gleason, Ralph Bellamy, Trading Places, Trading Places Online